“If we have not captured a child's interest in science by age 11, the research suggests that we won't, that we have lost them...” Primary Science journal, Number 154.
This research-driven statement is a scary thought, especially as you consider that the demand for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) employees is increasing year on year. At Woodhill, we strive to provide our children with the very best science learning experience so that they start secondary school with an interest or enthusiasm for it. We understand that they may choose not to take this love of science further, but if we don’t provide them with that inquisitive mind-set, then they will never have the opportunity to explore it further.
Woodhill teachers focus on modelling and supporting children to learn the skills they need in order to discover the knowledge themselves. It is all too easy to look online to discover which materials are conductors or why bacteria is important, but to actually investigate, observe and come to your own conclusions embeds this knowledge at a deeper level. We believe that children should have the chance to learn from themselves and others through guidance from adults, and share their new discoveries with their friends and family. There is nothing like the excitement on the face of a child who has just uncovered a new concept themselves. Our aim is to nurture this awe and wonder in every lesson.
Early Years is so important for the foundation of our children’s inquisitive minds. It is clear to see from our Early Years setting that this is encouraged through a wide variety of well-planned activities. The children regularly discuss what they see, investigate cause and effect (if I…. then this happens), observe the world around them, predict what will happen and so much more. These are the fundamental building blocks of early science.
Key Stage One
As children move into Key Stage One, their science learning becomes slightly more formal and structured, however they still experience hands-on and inspiring activities. We understand that this learning, where children explore and share their new found knowledge, is what enables ideas and new information to become embedded. Through carefully thought out tasks, thinking questions and activities, the children begin to apply their knowledge to familiar situations, and take the learning to a deeper and meaningful level.
Key Stage Two
Following on from Key Stage One, the children still experience practical and engaging lessons on a weekly basis, however their skills become more refined. They start to plan their investigations and draw conclusions, predict what will happen using their prior knowledge and decide how to present what they have found out. We still practice a skills-based approach, where the knowledge is learned through practising the skill, and this leads to more memorable learning journeys.
Please click HERE to view some of our exciting experiments and activities